A brand equity study applied to sports leagues by Emory University Sports Marketing Analytics has concluded that the worst fans in the NFL are Miami Dolphins fans. The team at Emory has studied fan loyalty in the NFL and NBA over the past three seasons, taking in a number of factors including marke…
There are obvious keys to the Miami Dolphins’ game on Sunday against the Detroit Lions. The Dolphins will have to win or at least equalize the battle in the trenches. The offensive line has had trouble against elite defensive lines like Buffalo in the past and Detroit matches up well against…
It’s the media’s job to be level-headed, subjective, and keep things in perspective. But the sweet part of being able to write for a blog like this is, while perspective and sensibility is appreciated, I am allowed to speak from the heart of a Miami Dolphins fan. I don’t have any fancy media credentials, nor did I get my college degree in journalism. I make my living working on eCommerce websites, and make the Dolphins one of my biggest passions.
This is why it’s okay for writers and fans like me to go out on a limb sometimes and not choose to write about what is likely to happen, but rather what we want to happen. We have no credibility to lose, just honest belief.
Never forget that writers for local papers like the Miami Herald, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, and Palm Beach Post are merely doing a job and delivering a story. None of them are actually even Dolphins fans. It’s good to have these sort of opinions dominating the main stream because their stories, reporting, and opinions are based on statistical probability.
However, there are stories in sports that not many people predict either because they’re a fan not wanting to jinx anything, or a member of the media who knows that history and probability say otherwise. But frankly, without these unpredictable storylines, without the turns of the tides, and without the once in a lifetime triumphs, we wouldn’t have sports at all.
One of ESPN‘s greatest commercials a few years back followed a lady jogging in the morning and literally running away from the everyday stresses in her life: kids, husband, job, school principal, gossiping friends etc. Finally, she turns a corner on her jogging route and loses them all. There was no dialogue to this ad, but rather just a caption that reads, “Without sports, how would we escape?” as she ran away (YouTube video below).
This is the feeling I get as a Dolphins fan when they’re winning, and the equally opposite utter disappointment when the probability and statistics do kick in to end the dream and hope.
So, as improbable as it would be for the Miami Dolphins to win nine straight games after losing its first seven, and even more improbable to make the playoffs, the possibility still exists.
You see, I lived in Boston in 2004 when the Red Sox won the World Series for the first time in nearly a century. Never before had a Major League Baseball team overcome an 0-3 deficit in a best of seven series, yet after winning that pivotal game four, Red Sox ‘Nation’ began to believe it was possible.
Overnight, it was as if a unified feeling of effervescence had taken over the city of Boston, and 3 games later, that 2004 team accomplished the impossible but frankly inevitable. I’m not a Red Sox fan, I root for all South Florida teams having grown up in the Bahamas, a puddle jump from Miami, but it was hard not to get sucked into the magic that MLB post-season.
The Miami Dolphins luck seemed to shift after getting that first win of the season in blow out fashion against a then-hot Kansas City Chiefs team. Now the Dolphins are riding a 3 game winning streak and look to push the streak to 4 tomorrow at the Dallas Cowboys.
After winning that first game, Karlos Dansby boldly stated that he believed the Dolphins could win out and make the playoffs. At 1-7, it seemed laughable at the time, but it seems the rest of the team has bought into the idea. And slowly after each win, the Suck for Luck chants have gotten quieter and more Dolphins fans are starting to believe, including myself.
So, don’t buy into the local and national media’s proclamation that the Dolphins are looking to play spoiler for the rest of the season. They can’t afford to write a story like this because it risks them being terribly wrong.
But from the heart of a Dolphins fan, scenes of the total improbable have started to play out in our heads, and if Miami can beat Dallas tomorrow, it’s gonna get serious.
Just as losing and dismay becomes contagious, so do winning and belief.
It’s not crazy, it’s sports.
Every player wearing those teal and orange uniforms believes, the coaching staff believes, and as a fan what more could you ask for?
Don’t be mistaken, these Dolphins aren’t simply trying to salvage their season, play the spoiler, or seem more respectable. The Miami Dolphins are playing to win every game and make the playoffs.